Friends, welcome to our new online magazine, INI!
INI is a new venture of the Madurai Province (MDU), Tamil Nadu, India, born on the feast day of St. Ignatius, 31 July 2021 – the year which Jesuits celebrate as the Ignatian Year – the 500th anniversary of his conversion.
INI, by the way, is not an acronym. INI, as you may guess, are the first two syllables of the original first name of St. Ignatius. He was called ‘Inigo.’ INI stands also for ‘initiative’. There is a Tamil word, which is pronounced exactly like the first two syllables of ‘Inigo’ and ‘initiative’. It means ‘henceforth,’ – ‘from now on.’
INI is, in fact, the brainchild of Fr. Danis Ponniah, SJ, MDU Provincial. It is he who thought of it and invited me to edit it. Trusting in the unfailing grace of God, the maternal love of Our Blessed Mother, and the blessings of our Founder and Father, St. Ignatius, I have accepted to edit this online magazine. I hope my experience of editing the New Leader for 20 years and Jivan, the South Asian Jesuit magazine for 17 years, will help. So will the feedback and help of the eminent members of our Editorial (Advisory) Board. To know who they are please click on ‘Editorial Board’ in the menu.
Anyone who asks ‘What is important to today’s Jesuits?’ has only to look at what Jesuits call their ‘Universal Apostolic Preferences (UAPs).’ After a long, serious process of discernment and discussion that lasted for nearly two years, Fr. General Arturo Sosa, SJ declared on 19 February 2019 that all through this decade (2020 -2029) Jesuits all over the world will focus on four areas: 1. To show the way to God through the Spiritual Exercises and discernment; 2. To walk with the poor, the outcasts of the world, those whose dignity has been violated, in a mission of reconciliation and justice; 3. To accompany young people in the creation of a hope-filled future; 4. To collaborate in the care of our Common Home.
In the light of these four apostolic preferences, every Jesuit Province has come up with its own apostolic preferences – called Province Apostolic Preferences (PAPs). Provinces seem to have mostly tried to interpret the UAPs in their own local context. The MDU Province came up with five – the first four reflecting the UAPs in the context of the State of Tamil Nadu, India and the fifth one on Jesuit formation – forming our men in Ignatian spirituality to be credible in life and mission.
Apart from focusing on UAPs of Jesuits, if any Province has, among its PAPs, something unique – like MDU’s PAP on Jesuit formation, INI will look at them too, with a view to enlightening others on why they consider it important.
INI is not merely for Jesuits everywhere, but also for all our associates and collaborators – professors, teachers, students, alumni, and priests and religious who belong to IGFA – the Ignatian Family – all those who draw inspiration from St. Ignatius and the Ignatian spirituality, all those who collaborate with Jesuits – priests, Religious and all men and women of good will.
So read INI regularly and send us your feedback, by clicking on ‘feedback’ in the menu. Get your friends and colleagues to read it.
To begin with, INI will be a quarterly, published every three months. INI is free and if you want it to be sent to your inbox regularly, you need to register, giving your name and email address in the slots on the right. Let INI inspire us all, in its own little way, to show the way to God, to walk with the marginalized and the poor, to work for reconciliation, justice and peace, to accompany our youth, and to care for our planet, our home!